How to Do Important Pre-Investigative Work on Divorce Listings

Laurel Starks here, the founder of the Divorce Real Estate Institute. I’m here with a tip for you on how to do pre-investigative work and the importance of it when you take on a divorce listing. This just happened to me so I figured, if it’s happening to me then it’s probably happening to other people throughout the country.  

I took a divorce listing just last week and my client brought in a mortgage statement. It said that they owed $292,000. Now, in my office, we always get an authorization to communicate with the bank and we got a mortgage payoff. It showed a $96,000.00 deferred principal balance from when they did a loan modification back in 2009.  

That drastically affected how much equity they have in the house along with other settlement negotiations that have gone on in the case. In this particular case, they got two other properties which were awarded to each of them and that was essentially their exchange.  

There was a little bit of additional money that would make up the difference. Now, the wife’s house doesn’t have nearly the equity they thought they did so they had to go back to the drawing board. 

I’m glad I found this out early in the process and before we put the house on the market, as opposed to finding it out when we were deep into escrow and just maybe a week or two from closing

In every listing, it’s my belief that the payoff should be ordered very early on in the process most especially in a divorce case as there is so much riding on this and they’ve got so many other “tentacles” to their case if you will that are being affected by the equity in the house. 

Your tip today, is to order the payoff early on in the process especially in a divorce listing. 

I hope this has been helpful and I’ll see you around. 

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